Wednesday, 10 October 2018

early spring

I feel like we have been pretty lucky with the spring weather so far, last weekend was great and this coming weekend is looking even better. I’m even ok with the colder/wetter few days at the moment, because it’s good for all the new plants I’ve planted in the garden. Yep, I’ve suddenly acquired an interest in gardening, but as my mother’s child it was probably only a matter of time.

We have a lot of work to do outside and in the garden, the builders were still here last spring/summer, and so now we have all these new decks and planters and stairs and fences that need painting and staining, and it all generally needs some love and attention. I’m trying to be a bit more motivated myself, and not rely on Matt to do them all. Because I am just as capable, just not very confident.

I’ve found it’s good for Elroy to be outside in the fresh air more too and once he’s settled playing, or riding his bike, then I can potter about. Or sit and read a book, it feels like a luxury, and it’s the first time since he was born that I’ve really just done things for myself while he’s awake. I don’t know why, I guess he is demanding and I give in easily.

Random pics from the last week: E painting the house, I made a lemon meringue pie and the lilac in the garden is flowering, E crafting in the morning.

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

three and a half

While we were away Elroy turned three and a half. Where did that time go? How is he such a little boy already. He is lovely, and that is his nickname sometimes, along with Peanut, and Dudie Pie - he likes this one best and tells me that.

He is busy and talkative, demanding and determined, noisy and sometimes silly. He can entertain himself well with imaginative play, in fact he has a wonderful imagination and really lives in his own world., which sometimes means he does not listen to us at all, much to our frustration.

He loves his friends, seems to enjoy his elc, is working hard on his swimming, can tentatively ride his pedal bike, loves to have 'dance parties' and listen to music, and can still be very absorbed by books. He is becoming more interested in drawing and craft, the scissors and glue in particular, but has come up with some great creations.

He is growing so fast and in so many ways this boy of ours.

Monday, 1 October 2018

new zealand part three

One of the places I knew I really wanted to visit in New Zealand was the Coromandel Peninsula, I kept seeing pictures of Cathedral Cove and felt we needed to go there. I wish we had had more time, it was so beautiful. In a way it was lucky, because the first morning there it was grey and drizzly and so we had to just stop and rest, look at the view and relax and eat crepes (or grapes as Elroy says) for breakfast, but then by the afternoon it had burnt off into the most stunning afternoon.

I don't think there was anywhere we went in New Zealand that we felt disappointed by, everywhere we went the scenery was amazing, the people so friendly and it was easy. Which is exactly what you want when traveling with a three year old. We will definitely be going back sometime.

Sunday, 30 September 2018

This weekend

Admittedly these photographs were all taken a few weeks ago...but let's ignore that fact! (the stuff in the first pic is my NZ loot).

Since we got back from our trip I think we have been in a better place, we all seem a bit happier and a bit lighter. Hopefully that lasts for a while! The weekends have been good, I have definitely been getting more time for myself and, as a very introverted person, this is exactly what I need. We've had a date night last weekend (we saw Juliet, Naked which was ok, I had read the book and it is very true to that), on friday we had dinner out with Elroy at ti ama at his request, I've planted lots of new plants in the garden, and got through a few of the house jobs on my list.

I feel like there is a lot of 'things for me' at the moment too:

*on friday I picked up Lily Allen's new book and I'm a fair way through now, it's great, she's great, I saw her live the last time she was in Australia and remember being so impressed by her. I also loved her cover for like a version, I first heard it when I was walking Jerry at night and it gave me the shivers, in a really good way.

*speaking of music, I also picked up some new vinyl this week: Nick Cave's Lovely Creatures and Distant Sky (definitely in a Nick Cave phase over the last few years), and Achtung Baby which was one of my favourites in my early teens. I got to crank these on my own yesterday while the boys were out watching the football.

*Ottolenghi's new book Simple is beautiful, and I need to work out which recipes to try first!

*I'm so happy there will be a new live music tv program for Australia, Matt and I frequently bring out the Recovery dvds, and I like the fact that there will be something for Elroy. He loves watching live music.

*probably not in the inspiring category, more in the trashy and I'm sorry to admit it category, but I've been watching the Royals, and it's been a good escape at the end of work days.

Friday, 21 September 2018

new zealand part two

On the way out of Auckland, Matt mentioned visiting Hobbiton to me, I was in shock. I wasn't going to suggest it, because I knew it wasn't really his thing (although we have both read The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings series). But he did and we went, and it was actually really great. It's in the most beautiful place, so green it is surreal, and it was definitely a bit magical. Even Elroy hung in there for the two our tour. 

We had three nights in Rotorua, and we did our fair share of touristy things. Visited the thermal spa, the geothermal park at Waiotapu, Lake Taupo, found the most beautiful Lake Tarawera, Matt and Elroy did the giant Redwoods tree walk (I did not - fear of heights!), Matt did some mountain biking and that was it really. We also found a really great children's store called Monkey Kids, and got Elroy some great memory cards - which we sadly lost somewhere along the way and didn't make it home with us.

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

seven things spring edition

I am super glad we are on the other side of winter, although in Tasmania you can never quite be sure when it’s really over. But still, it is lighter and feels brighter and warmer and I’m all for that. I started thinking about this list when we were in New Zealand. Something about visiting new stores always puts me in a “want, want” mode. That’s not good. This spring list covers off a few updates for home and for for me!

1. Vitra toolbox - I saw these in a few places in New Zealand, I think it would be good for storing some of Elroy’s pens and craft items, which seem to be multiplying.
2. Simple by Ottolenghi - this book is beautiful, I picked it up on the weekend and can’t wait to try the recipes.
3. Gorman raincoat - I already have one of these, and it’s been so handy. I like this pattern it’s bright and cheerful.
4. Round velvet squab - I can't resist a velvet cushion and this colour is beautiful.
5. Blue nude card- I just think this is beautiful, which is why it is here.
6. Veja sneakers - I currently have a pair of Spring Courts which I LOVE, they are super comfortable and I like the style, but I am wearing them to death, another pair of sneakers might help them last a little longer.
7.  Hay Ruban mirror - this has been on my list forever, I don't know why I don't just but it. It's actually tiny, but I like that.

Sunday, 16 September 2018

new zealand part one

About two months ago we decided we really needed a holiday, a proper one. We looked at Fiji, but then didn't think a resort for over a week would be right for us. We had been toying with the idea of Auckland for a while, so we went with New Zealand. We planned the trip to have some time in Auckland, some time in Rotorua (mostly so Matt could get some mountain biking in) and some time on the Coromandel Peninsula. It worked out so well, a really great trip to take with a child Elroy's age, some moving about but not too much. Because the trip was in three parts I'm going to do three blog posts, so get ready for some NZ spam!

The first full day there we drove out to Piha and it was so beautiful and such a great way to start a holiday and forget reality. We walked up one of the big hills and I experienced the full force of my vertigo - but felt so happy that I did it, had a picnic at the beach and made the most of it before the rain came in.

The next day we walked up Mount Eden and found some amazing parks for Elroy to play in (one of the brilliant things in New Zealand were the children's playgrounds - so great), I visited a few shops on my list: Father Rabbit, Alex and Corban and Citta.

The third and fourth days were rainy which was a bit of a pity, so we took it slow, a few drives, a few more shops for me - the incredible Tessuti and Everyday Needs - I really did find that New Zealand/Auckland has a much more interesting design approach, well these stores were certainly refreshing for me.

We had some lovely meals, we ended up going to Amano on three separate occasions (one on our very last day for an eat in lunch which was so good), the other times were for takeaway lunch and dinner, Pasta and Cuore, Mexico, and Little and Friday a few times as well. Elroy is pretty good at going out for dinner, but we have to be careful not to push him too many nights in a row. It is always a balance traveling with children.